AEROSMITH frontman Steven Tyler says that his effort to stop GOP presidential hopeful Donald Trump from using AEROSMITH‘s 1973 breakthrough hit, “Dream On”, at his campaign events was part of a broader campaign to help strengthen copyright protection for songwriters and up-and-coming artists. “My intent was not to make a political statement, but to make one about the rights of my fellow music creators,” Tyler says in a new guest column for The Huffington Post.
Earlier this week, Tyler‘s attorneys sent a cease-and-desist letter to the campaign, claiming that Trump does “not have our client’s permission to use ‘Dream On’ or any of Tyler‘s other songs” and that it “gives the false impression that he is connected with or endorses Mr. Trump‘s presidential bid… We are unaware of any public performance license granting Trump For President the right to perform ‘Dream On’ in connection with the campaign. If Trump For President has any such license, please forward it to our attention immediately.”
Tyler goes on to say that he thinks some of the new technologies are “really cool,” especially as they enable the fans to “listen to music wherever [they] are, make up [their] own playlists, and hear what [they] want when [they] want.” But he insists that “the laws need to change” that control how songwriters and artists get paid for their music. He says: “Seventy-five percent of songwriters’ income in the U.S. is regulated by the government? Too much government intervention in art and music is a bad thing… Songwriters, producers and artists can’t survive on what they are being paid.”